Formal Post-Bac Program

The highly structured, formal post-bac program prepares students for applying to graduate health professions schools such as medical, dental, and pharmacy schools. The program is split into two tracks: a Career Changer Track (CCT) and an Academic Enhancer Track (AET).

The CCT is for those needing to take for the first time prerequisite science and math courses and a limited number of upper-division science electives. The AET is for those who need to improve their academic record by retaking some prerequisites and upper-division science electives as well as taking for the first time a number of upper-division science electives. Participants are also welcome to choose among the many science and public health electives offered in the Pre-Nursing Post-Bac Program.

Sample curricula are shown below. Students must complete 40 units of coursework (which includes the Health Professions Colloquium) to satisfy certificate requirements. Up to 20 units may be able to be transferred from past coursework. Students enroll in special sessions through the College of Extended Learning.

Formal Post-Bac Curriculum CCT Year 1
Semester Summer I Fall I Spring I




Courses (Units)

Total Units 12 Units 10-12 Units 10-12 Units
Formal Post-Bac Curriculum CCT Year 2
Semester Summer II Fall II Spring II



Courses (Units)

Total Units 7-9 Units 6-10 Units 2-7 Units


  • Discussion sections for the Career Changer Track are optional but highly recommended. Total units above include discussions.

  • We recommend that you have a minimum of two electives in upper-division science courses before applying to health professions school.

  • Those who take Pre-Calculus during the first summer are strongly recommended to continue onward to Calculus I.

Formal Post-Bac Curriculum AET
Semester Summer Fall Spring






Courses (Units)

  • The curriculum above reflects the semester in which a course may be scheduled. Actual course offerings are subject to change based on demand.
  • Most AETs take three courses per semester in consultation with an advisor.



The program will cost $600 per unit for core classes (health profession school prerequisite science and math courses) and electives. As an incentive for optional classes, discussion sections cost $200 per unit ($200 total) and Colloquia cost $100 per unit ($200 total). There is no difference in costs for in-state and out-of-state residents.

Financial aid is available in the form of subsidized and non-subsidized federal loans and unsubsidized private loans. Prospective applicants are strongly encouraged to complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) application as soon as possible and officially forward a copy to SF State's Financial Aid Office.

Please note: Federal policy limits the financial aid available to post-bacs. At present, because the Formal Post-Bac Program confers a certificate and not a degree, students are only able to receive federal financial aid for one year (three continuous semesters), starting when the student joins the program. Thereafter, students can still get financial aid through private loans and scholarships. Students facing this issue can also work part-time while taking classes part-time. This issue affects most CCTs, who are part of a two-year program.